Oftentimes, improper receiving techniques do nothing but promote higher risks of contamination ingression, mixing of lubricants, etc. Proper written receiving procedures should be in place to ensure the highest level of consistency and cleanliness is maintained. Proper receiving techniques should include filtration of incoming oils. Many times new oils may be dirtier than your defined particle target cleanliness level. Meaning, if you define your particle target cleanliness level and spend time, money, manpower, etc., to achieve these levels of in-service lubricant cleanliness, the last thing you want to do is contaminate it with “dirty” new oils.
4. Quality Control
Quality control of lubricants delivered from lube suppliers must be verified to ensure the correct product is being delivered and that the cleanliness of the delivered lubricant are up to current target particle and moisture cleanliness levels.
To help ensure your lubricants are meeting their standards, the use of oil analysis is a powerful tool and will reveal the following:
- Quality of base stocks
- Additive quality and concentration
- Lubricant performance properties
- Thickener performance properties (grease)
Oil analysis results and other quality assurance variables, such as damaged containers, rusted containers and any other quality issue, should be well documented and cataloged.
Items to note in the documentation phase are:
- Delivery date and date of oil sample taken
- Inspection results of storage containers
- Labels depicting results of oil analysis test
- Itemized checklist for sampling test
- Periodic decontamination with filtration
Each container should be fitted with a breather, sight glass, filter, lubricant label, quick connect fittings and dedicated dispensing line. This system will help ensure the lubricants are at optimal condition when they are needed and the right product for the application is dispensed.
Periodic filtration for drum storage also is easy with the use of a filter cart once the drums are equipped with quick couplers. No matter how large or small the storage container, periodic decontamination should be a priority to maintain the quality of the stored lubricant.
6. Dispensing Options for Stored Oils When stored oil is transferred from the bulk storage system to the top-up container, it is best to filter the dispensing oil. This can be made very easy with the use of a hard plumbed filtration system and a rack mounted storage system fitted with dedicated dispensing nozzles. If using 55-gallon drums, they can be fitted with quick connect fittings, a hand pump, an inline filter manifold breather and sight glass to achieve the same goal.
Improper dispensing of new oils into top-up containers is a primary cause of self-induced contamination. Proper techniques and tools must be used to ensure your new, filtered oil is transferred to the top-up container with minimal exposure to atmospheric conditions. Not using proper techniques here could be a waste of time to the filtration efforts, storage and in-service lubriation cleanliness.
(by Stephen Sumerlin)
to be continue...